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Ten NFL streaks that will (or won't) be snapped in 2018 season

The Cleveland Browns will enter the 2018 season on a 17-game losing skid, something that undoubtedly will be given a lot of media attention. I mean, they're on "Hard Knocks," after all. But it is big. Think about it this way: Since the Browns' last win, the Vegas Golden Knights began team operations, drafted a brand new roster and reached the Stanley Cup Finals. So, the expansion Golden Knights have more finals appearances than the Browns had wins last year. Wow.

The Browns aren't the only ones with an active streak -- of ineptitude or aptitude -- worth keeping an eye on in 2018. Here are 10 more intriguing subplots in this vein:

THE STREAK: Julio Jones has logged four straight 1,400-yard receiving seasons.

Will it live? Yes.

Why? Most fantasy enthusiasts will bemoan the lack of touchdowns from Jones, even writing fan fiction about Matt Ryan having some deep-seated hatred of Alabama receivers because he fell in love with Reese Witherspoon after seeing "Sweet Home Alabama" in high school but she snubbed him for an autograph while walking the red carpet for "Walk the Line" in 2005. Now, that probably didn't happen. But we do know Julio doesn't score many touchdowns. He does get a lot of targets, though -- at least 148 in three of the last four seasons, according to Pro Football Reference. He had 129 targets in 2016, but considering he played just 14 games that season, that still works out to more than nine targets a game. The volume will be there for Jones to keep the streak alive.

THE STREAK: Joe Flacco has thrown two or fewer touchdown passes in 20 straight games.

Will it live? Well, maybe for a bit?

Why? I feel bad for Flacco. Back injuries have ruined some of the greats. Larry Bird. Mario Lemieux. Shawn Michaels. Likewise, Flacco hasn't been the same since he sustained his. So you can't fault the Ravens for taking his eventual replacement, Lamar Jackson, in the first round of April's draft. Flacco could respond very well, making like "The Heartbreak Kid" when he returned to beat HHH at the 2002 Survivor Series. Either that happens, and Flacco busts the streak by throwing three-plus TDs in a game, or Jackson becomes the starter in Week 3, thus stagnating the streak at 22 games. But does the streak actually stay alive if Flacco stays on the bench? Now we're getting philosophical and my head hurts. Time to move on to a more soothing topic ...

THE STREAK: The Chicago Bears have finished last in the NFC North in four straight seasons.

Will it live? You obviously don't know me well enough yet. Hi, my name is Adam. And the answer here is ... HELL NO.

Why? Not to go all Rick Reilly on what I wrote here, but this year's Bears are going to be last year's Rams. The key, of course, is second-year man Mitch Trubisky. I know John Fox said that the quarterback could be an issue. But what would he know? Giving Fox a QB is akin to gifting an Acura to an Amish person. He's not going to know how to use it. There is a risk here, because the division is super tough and 8-8 could actually land the Bears in last place again. But I'm going to project 10 wins for this club, and a trip out of the cellar.

THE STREAK: The Cincinnati Bengals have not won a playoff game since the 1990 campaign.

Will it live? Yes.

Why? What's the definition of insanity? Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting Marvin Lewis to win a playoff game. We could talk about Cincy's great offseason moves, like drafting Billy Price and trading for Cordy Glenn. But Marvin Lewis is still the coach. It's like going to Taco Bell, ordering a Mexican pizza and expecting it to be a box full of money. You can hope for that, but it's not happening.

THE STREAK: The Detroit Lions have gone 68 games without a 100-yard rusher.

Will it live? I want to say no, but ...

Why? It seems like it should end. But that's the kind of thinking that compels a person to walk up to a roulette wheel and bet on red because it has come up black 68 times in a row. The probability is still slightly less than 50-50, despite past outcomes. And this is how people lose their money. It's especially daunting when you see that it's Jim Bob Cooter who is still handing out the chips at the table. But remember, the Lions did try to establish Ameer Abdullah as the primary ball carrier last year, giving him 66 totes in the first four games. The only problem with that was Ameer Abdullah. If the Lions could settle on an early-down back like Kerryon Johnson or LeGarrette Blount, that streak should snap. Although it will probably be something like Theo Riddick scoring on an 86-yard reverse, then getting 15 rando rushing yards elsewhere. But yes, it ends.

THE STREAK: The Kansas City Chiefs have won 10-plus games in three straight seasons.

Will it live? No.

Why? Listen, I'm as excited about Patrick Mahomes as the next guy. But you have four games against two potential top-five defenses in the Chargers and Broncos. Kansas City's D wasn't great last year when it had Marcus Peters, so I'm not looking for the unit to improve without the stud corner. I expect the Chiefs' offense to be a fantasy delight, but it will end up on the losing end of a lot of shootouts.

THE STREAK: Drew Brees has posted 12 straight 4,000-yard passing seasons.

Will it live? Yes.

Why? I was ready to say this streak would die, but even in a down year for Brees in 2017, he still threw 536 passes to easily clear the 4,000-yard mark. And I would expect a bigger role for Alvin Kamara as a receiver out of the backfield -- especially early in the year, when Mark Ingram is serving a four-game suspension. Kamara had 81 receptions last year, and I could see that number increase to 100, which will help Brees maintain his passing standards.

THE STREAK: The New England Patriots have played in seven consecutive AFC Championship Games.

Will it live? Yes.

Why? I'm not going to be the person who picks against the Patriots. Because you know it's going to happen. It's automatic. Like how every millennial male will have his bachelor party in Austin, Texas. It's not my way, it's just the way it is. But the competition seems to be heating up. The Jaguars should be just as good this year, as that defense remains loaded. The Chargers could be considered the best team in the AFC, if you base this on rosters alone. (Though that Hunter Henry injury is a big hit.) And then you have upstart teams like the Titans, who made the playoffs (and got a win) last season. It seems like AFC counterparts are gaining on the Patriots. But no, I'm not betting against Bill Belichick and Tom Brady.

THE STREAK: The New York Giants haven't reached 30 points in 33 games.

Will it live? No.

Why?Odell Beckham Jr. returns. The team drafted Saquon Barkley. And most importantly, they signed Nate Solder and drafted Will Hernandez to revamp the offensive line. So not only will the G-Men break this streak, but I say they top 30 points in half their games. And yes, I do realize Eli Manning is still their quarterback. But it only seems like he's that old. Like when you find out that William H. Macy is really just 48. You think, Wow, I thought that guy was like, way older. But nope, he's 48. So, Eli is going to be great in this offense. (All right, by now, you've gone to Google to find that William H. Macy is 68. But, Eli isn't that old by comparison, so that's something, right?)

THE STREAK: The Seattle Seahawks have recorded six straight winning seasons.

Will it live? No.

Why? This team is different. Instead of Russell Wilson and a supporting cast of who's who in the NFL, it's now a cast of ... Who is that? The team got rid of big personalities like Marshawn Lynch, Richard Sherman and Michael Bennett. It's like when I saw Guns N' Roses at the Hard Rock in the 2000s. Axl was there, but it wasn't the same without Slash and Duff. Not that Rashaad Penny couldn't be the Seahawks' version of Buckethead or Robin Finck, but it's just a different feel. So maybe this team surprises and makes it to paradise city. But it's so easy? Not so much.

Follow Adam Rank on Twitter @adamrank.

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